UCCS drops sixth straight
DENVER- Alex Potts hit a short jumper with 1.4 seconds remaining to left the Regis Rangers to a 78-75 victory Tuesday night at Regis Fieldhouse and season sweep of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
It was as gutty a performance as could be hoped for from the Mountain Lions, who were grossly undermanned for much of the game. But this gutty performance was only a moral victory. The Mountain Lions are in desperate need of real victories.
With its sixth consecutive loss, UCCS' Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference record dropped to 7-9 with the loss, opening the door for Colorado Christian and Colorado School of Mines, both 6-9, to catch the Mountain Lions in the race for the seventh and eighth spots in the RMAC playoffs. UCCS is 14-10 overall.
"It's all about mentality," said Joe Scott, who led the Mountain Lions with a career-high 22 points. "We aren't coming into games expecting to win like we did earlier in the season.
'That's what everyone needs to fix."
Scott did what he could to fix it. The freshman made 4-of-6 from 3-point range and all six of his free throws.
Ironically, it was Scott who misfired on a 3-point attempt with the score tied at 75 and 28.7 seconds remaining. The Rangers got the rebound and, after a timeout, worked the ball around before Brandon Butler found Potts with a cross-court pass.
A free throw with 0.3 seconds left accounted for the final margin.
Butler led Regis (8-15, 3-13 RMAC) with 28 points and 10 rebounds.
The Mountain Lions knew this one would be a gut-check. With leading scorer Patrick Hannaway sidelined with a sprained ankle and No. 2 scorer and top playmaker Nic Fuller limited by the flu, UCCS was outmanned before the game even started.
The problem was exacerbated when Bly McGuire was called for a rebounding foul despite being held by Geremey Gibson. When McGuire expressed frustration, he received a technical foul-which also proved to be his third personal- and had to be removed from the game at with over 11 minutes remaining in the half.
With the Mountain Lions' big three neutralized, the others needed to step up.
"I felt like I needed to put some of the load on my shoulders," said Scott. "Eric (Davis) picked it up also."
Davis grabbed a team-high nine rebounds to compliment his six points. He also helped equalize Regis' hyper-physical style of play. Despite being limited, McGuire added 16 points and Fuller had 13. Patrick Simpson had seven assists.
Regis extended its lead to as many as eight after McGuire left the game, but an unlikely lineup of Leo Thomas, Simpson, Ben Feilmeier, Kyle Perkins and Davis not only kept UCCS in the game, but also whittled down the deficit.
A pair of Simpson passes, the first to Joe Scott for a short jumper and the second threaded in to Davis for a layup, helped UCCS go into the intermission tied at 32.
With the Mountain Lions'final three games all at home, they still have a good chance of qualifying for the RMAC playoffs.
They just need to turn the moral victories into real ones.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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